Various ‘The Song Before The Song’ CD/DL-039

039Various ‘The Song Before The Song’ CD/DL-039

Released: March 2007, CD-download

Behind most famous songs that we all know and love, are the original/early versions that we have never heard – until now.
Highlighting a fascinating period in the development of Popular music, these songs inspired and influenced artists, covering them almost exactly or taking elements & molding it into their own version.For example Elvis heard Big Mama Thornton’s version of ‘Hound Dog’ and copied it almost exactly but in his own distinctive style. Bob Dylan heard ‘Highway 61’ by Jack Kelly’s Memphis Jug Band and this inspired him to write his own ‘Highway 61 Revisited’.Whether the original or early version is better than its more famous off spring is debatable but it raises the question- if the song was good in the first place, why wasn’t it the original or early version that became famous? The answer to this is quite simply that the social and political climate at the time was totally wrong for these songs to be heard by a mass audience. There was no worldwide music industry, marketing etc as we know it today -also many of the artists were black. Thankfully the legacy of these great songs still lives on today, in what we all know as Popular music- without them it would be totally different.


1. Big Mama Thornton – Hound Dog 1952
2. Hal Singer -Rock Around The Clock 1950
3. Henry Thomas – Bull Doze Blues 1928
4. Josh White- House of the Rising Sun 1944
5. Nat King Cole – Route 66 1946
6. Leadbelly – Gallis Pole 1939
7. One Night – Smiley Lewis 1955
8. The Bently Boys- Down on Penny’s Farm 1929
9. Slim Gaillard – Tutti Frutti 1945
10. Sidney Bechet – Summertime 1939
11. Lucille Bogan – T and No Blues 1933
12. Big Joe Williams – Baby Please Don’t Go 1935
13. Arthur Crudup – My Baby Left Me 1950
14. Blind Blake – Diddle Wa Diddie 1929
15. Emmett Miller – Lovesick Blues 1928
16. Hank Snow – A Fool Such As I 1952
17. Lonnie Coleman – Old Rock Island Blues 1929
18. Bill Monroe – Blue Moon of Kentucky 1946
19. Jack Kelly’s South Memphis Jug Band – Highway 61 1933
20. Emry Arthur – I’m a Man of Constant Sorrow 1928

  • ‘Andy Gill’s pick of the week’ Independent March 2007
  • ‘For someone who likes and has a knowledge of all kinds of vintage popular music, then I’m sure there’ll be something here that will appeal’ Now Dig This March 2007
  • ‘It’s a head-spinning + truly breathtaking collection’ Tim Peacock Whisperin’and Hollerin’ April 2007